East Side Buzz: Two-Parcel Site Sells in Five Points, Friends of Shelby Park Push for East Nashville License Plate, The Hideout Salon Presents Second Breath, Eggstravaganza 2019, and more

Two-Parcel Site Sells in Five Points Neighborhood

A two-parcel property located in the Five Points neighborhood has sold for almost $3.3 million according to the Nashville Post. The parcels, once home to E&R Auto Sales, hold the addresses of 1012 Main St. and 1004 Forrest Ave.

Almost exactly two years ago in May 2017, Sunny Meadows LP acquired the property for nearly $2.675 million. The new owner is Nashville-based Oldacre McDonald, which paid a little more than $3.2 million for the site.

Two years ago, James Matthews created Sunny Meadows LP to redevelop the site with a five-story building. “That effort could have yielded a structure with two stories fronting Main (and likely to have included retail space) and, after a step back, an additional three stories of residential space. That configuration would have allowed for some open space with a small surface parking lot positioned next to the building home to The 5 Spot,” reports the Post.

Another option Matthews considered was a three-story building with no surface parking lot and encompassing the full property footprint.

Many neighbors were against one option, and some were against both. The property is located within Metro Councilman Brett Withers’ District 6, and neighbors’ concerns about Matthews proposed plans were voiced in a community meeting.

Photo Credit: Metro Property Assessor

“At the conclusion of the community meeting I let the applicants know that obtaining a height variance for this parcel is a high hurdle and that while some support was expressed there was not sufficient community support for me to recommend that the team move forward with a variance request to add two more stories than current zoning allows,” says Withers.

“I found two points that residents expressed during the community meeting to be most compelling,” says Withers. “The first objection raised was that this parcel was included in an early expansion of the Lockeland Springs-East End Conservation Overlay District. This was approved in 2003 by then-District 6 Council Member Eileen Beehan with the expressed legislative intent of preserving historic structures along 10th Street including the Walnut Exchange Building and the houses on Clearview Avenue, one of which includes Treehouse Restaurant, as well as preserving viewsheds of important historic civic structures such as the East High campus, the East Library building, and others.  The Metro Historic Zoning Commission would have opposed a height variance that would have run counter to these historic character place-making objectives,” explains Withers.

“The second objection raised during the meeting was that Main Street and Gallatin Avenue are already lined with parcels that bear MUG-A [mixed use general] zoning that allows structures of up to five stories along Main and even more along Gallatin depending on the parcel size. Therefore, there are plenty of opportunities to add increased residential density and mixed uses along Main and Gallatin in taller buildings than what the Conservation Overlay would allow for this parcel,” says Withers.

Withers stated that the existing zoning in place does allow for a building of up to three stories that wraps the entire frontage of Main Street and Forrest Avenue with a step-back requirement for the third floor.

“At this time I have not heard a compelling argument for permitting a height variance, although I would entertain variances for topographical and grade change challenges and access/egress,” says Withers. “I do look forward to continuing conversations about finding the right project for this uniquely positioned parcel that matches the context and does not draw attention away from the historic structures that surround it.”

No Oldacre McDonald officials were available for comment about their plans for the site before publication of this article.

Friends of Shelby Park and Bottoms Push for Official East Nashville License Plate

Last August Friends of Shelby Park and Bottoms, a non-profit organization that works to preserve, protect and enhance its namesake, launched preorders for the first specialty license plate designed for East Nashvillians.

License plate sales support the organization’s efforts to maintain park features, promote educational programs, support recreational activities, engage visitors, and undertake revitalization efforts within the 1,300-acre urban park system.

Purchasing one of the special edition license plates is a way for locals to showcase their East Nashville pride while supporting long-term improvements to the park.

The design of the license plate incorporates many visuals that represent Shelby Park, such as a plane to represent Cornelia Fort Air Park, and icons to describe the many uses of the park including a kite, bicycle, dog, camera, and more. Additionally, images like a guitar and tomato (a nod to Tomato Fest) represent East Nashville.

To secure the special edition license plate, Friends of Shelby will need to collect 1,000 preorders for the plate.  The non-profit contacted state legislators earlier this year to request passage of a bill for the specialty plate. The preorder requirement of 1,000 plates must be met by December 2019.

“We just passed our 200th plate sold, and we are well on our way to the state requirement of 1,000 plates sold to enter production,” says Kevin Martelli, board of directors’ secretary for Friends of Shelby Park.  “The other piece of exciting news is that we’ve been working with state legislators to make this plate state-official. Our newly drafted amendment to Tennessee House Bill 179 / Tennessee Senate Bill 42 will soon be up for a vote!”

The specialty plates retail for $35.00 and a portion of the purchase is tax deductible. If the goal of 1,000 preorders is not met by December 2019, purchasers will be notified, and the $35 preorder fee will be transferred as a $35 tax-deductible donation to Friends of Shelby Park and Bottoms.

Individuals who already have a specialty plate can switch to the East Nashville-themed license plate at the same cost of renewing their current plate.

“Our goal is for this license plate to become a wonderful symbol of our culture in East Nashville while benefiting all East Nashvillians through preserving, protecting, and enhancing Shelby Park, Shelby Bottoms, and Cornelia Fort,” says Martelli.

Click here to preorder your special edition license plate.

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The Hideout Salon Presents Second Breath

In connection with the East Side Art Stumble, The Hideout Salon presents Second Breath, a collaborative exhibition featuring large scale paintings by Shahnaz Lighari along with hand-woven textiles by Monya Nikahd displayed on live models on the night of the opening. The show will be on display beginning Saturday, April 13 from 6-9 p.m. and will last through the end of the month.

Second Breath is an exhibition curated by Shahnaz Lighari and features her work along with Monya Nikahd who works in the fiber arts medium, dyeing thin, natural yarn and weaving it on a Macomber loom. According to an official press release Nikahd’s recent work, “focuses on the concept of a hybrid time period within a dystopian, destructive setting.”  Shahnaz Lighari is a painter and poet from Nashville whose abstract expressionist paintings are “a radical exploration of beauty in chaos and wreckage.”

“I initially reached out to Monya about a possible collaboration after we’d had a few talks about the themes that were coming up in our work and found that we had a lot in common,” says Lighari. “We’re both interested in the idea of how the ephemeral, transient elements in life can manifest in the minds of observers creating lasting impressions on environments, and the idea of working within a traditional medium to present contemporary and modern ideas. When I began this series of paintings, I wanted to display them in a context that felt like a world of their own where they would form fragmented, surreal landscapes within the space. As that vision grew, I felt that including Monya’s hand-woven garments would make an excellent addition to the exhibition.”

Second Breath is part of The East Side Art Stumble, a monthly event produced through the partnership of galleries, businesses, studios, and artists to draw people to East Nashville and showcase the neighborhoods’ many creatives. The Art Stumble happens the second Saturday of each month and is held at a variety of places in the community.

“I wanted to find a space with a cool vibe outside of the traditional gallery environment where people can really spend time with the work and become immersed,” says Lighari. “The Hideout Salon & Lounge is a new business in East Nashville run by Chelsea Williams-Joffrey. When Chelsea shared with me her vision of opening an eclectic, inclusive space that supports local artists and community I knew it would be a great fit.”

The Hideout Salon and Lounge opened this March and is located above the community staple, The Lipstick Lounge. They describe themselves as “a community space committed to diversity, creativity, and rad hairstyles.” The salon and lounge will have complimentary beer from Black Abbey on opening night of the exhibition.

Click here for more information about the exhibition.

Eggstravaganza 2019

If you’re on the “hunt” for a family-friendly Easter celebration, look no further.

The 510 Foundation, Nashville First Church of the Nazarene (NFCN), and Warner Arts Magnet Elementary are partnering to host the annual East Nashville Easter Eggstravaganza. This community Easter egg hunt takes place on Saturday, April 20 starting at 11 a.m. in East Park located at 700 Woodland St.

Center stage will be set up in the park directly in front of Warner Elementary and Mayor David Briley will deliver the opening remarks.

This event is open to the public and will include free popcorn, cotton candy, over 15,000 eggs filled with candy, prizes, a photo op with the Easter Bunny, and much more. All attendees are encouraged to bring their own Easter baskets.

The East Nashville Easter Eggstravaganza began in the spring of 2012, hosted by NFCN and coordinated by their Children’s Pastor, Reverend Sabrina Jones.

“This is the first year in which NFCN is partnering with the 510 Foundation and Warner Arts Magnet Elementary to host this event,” says Reverend Jones. “The 510 Foundation is providing the necessary funding to cover expenses for this event. Principal Ricki Gibbs, Ed.D. and Mr. Jon Wren at Warner have partnered in this event by connecting with Metro Parks & Recreation to secure the use of East Park.”

The 510 Foundation is a nonprofit organization providing long-term support to ministries in Nashville and around the world.

Click here for more information on this event.

Independent Bookstore Day at The Bookshop

The Bookshop will be celebrating Independent Bookstore Day (IBD) from 10 a.m.-6 p.m. on Saturday, April 27.

Formerly known as Her Bookshop, The Bookshop is an intimate and charming retreat offering a specially curated selection of unique, highly designed books on a wide range of topics.

The owner, Joelle Herr, has 20 years of book-publishing experience, is the author of more than 15 books, and also writes a column entitled Bookish for The East Nashvillian.

“Independent Bookstore Day is a one-day, nationwide celebration of indies and the bookish folks who love them,” says Herr. “We have so many goodies, perks, and offerings in store for the day.”

These in-store items include: free donut holes (while supplies last) from East Park Donuts, a coloring station for kids including crayons and free activity sheets (this is in lieu of their usual Saturday Storytime), special limited-quantity merchandise created exclusively for IBD, and giveaways including a raffle prize worth more than $100.

The first 20 customers will receive a coupon for a free drip coffee from Kettner Coffee Supply, and there will be a happy hour from 4-6 p.m. where wine and Writers’ Tears whiskey will be available for customers 21 years-old and up.

Click here for more information on the event.

Quick Bits

― Parents beware if your children are covered by TennCare or CoverKids, two Tennessee government health insurance programs for low-income families. The Tennessean reports that at least 128,000 children were purged from these programs and many parents are still unaware their children no longer have coverage. According to the Tennessean, the programs dropped these children because they are no longer qualified or because their families did not respond to mandatory renewal forms that were mailed over the past three years. Read more at the Tennessean.

― Hutson Avenue residents in the Maplewood Heights neighborhood hope to be considered for Metro’s Traffic Calming program after a local neighbor’s dog was killed by a speeding truck. Residents applied for the Traffic Calming program in January but Huston Avenue was not selected. Read more at WKRN.com.

― Drivin N Cryin shared their brand new track “Step By Step” from their forthcoming Aaron Lee Tasjan-produced LP Live the Love Beautiful on Billboard.com. The new album is out on June 21. Read more at Billboard.

― Pack your yoga mat and head to the beer garden at East Nashville Beer Works for Yoga & Brews on April 20. Enjoy a great workout to start your Saturday and stay afterward for East Nashville Beer Works’ happy hour Pint and Pizza special. Read more about the event here.

― If you’re looking for some family-friendly fun this weekend, Edgefield Baptist Church is hosting a Spring Fling on Saturday, April 6th, from 11 a.m.-1 p.m. The event will feature a petting zoo, balloon twister, cotton candy, fitness fun, Jordan’s Bar-B-Q food truck, a special appearance by the Easter bunny, and the always popular Easter egg hunt. Read more at Edgefield Baptist Church.

― Attention beer lovers, The East Nashville Beer Fest returns to East Park on April 13. In addition to a plethora of beers to sample there will be a selection of food trucks, and a music stage sponsored by East Side Smiles. Read more at East Nashville Beer Fest.